New York, N.Y.
Entrepreneur Lisa Price knows when it’s time for a company to move to a merger, acquisition, or sale. In a lucrative deal reportedly worth millions, she recently sold hers to cosmetics giant L’Oréal USA.
Price is the founder of Carol’s Daughter, a beauty brand whose body lotions, hair care products and fragrances, made with Price’s own blends of natural oils and botanicals, were manufactured in her kitchen in Brooklyn, New York. With names like Love Butter, Black Vanilla Hair Smoothie and Hair Milk, the line became a household name among Black women, who became loyal customers. Price, the author of Success Never Smelled So Sweet, was on her way. The need arose for an infusion of cash arose and Price’s first business partner, Steve Stoute, encouraged her to turn to celebrities. “Steve convinced me that I needed a celebrity team who had a presence in the press,” she says. “We needed people to talk and write about the brand. The story then shifted, and we saw how far that got us; we saw what it really takes to do business.” Her team consisted of actors Will Smith and Jada Pinkett-Smith, rapper Jay Z, singer Mary J. Blige and music producer Jimmy Iovine. Today, Carol’s Daughter products can be found in Target and Walgreens stores.
As far as the decision to sell to L’Oréal, Price says and another top brand were at the top of her list. “I know the other brand’s story and I like how they approached the beauty business, but in the end L’Oréal was the better fit,” explains Price. She cautions aspiring entrepreneurs to never tire of telling their story, saying, “I’ve told my story thousands of times. But I am the one who should tell it; I wrote it and I know it. That’s what makes it unique, different, special and important.”